Top 10 Competitive Markets for Home Buyers by LendingTree

LendingTree, a company which helps match people to loans (think: dating app for mortgages), took the data received from over 1.5 million purchase mortgage loan requests from the 100 largest cities of the United States in 2017 and ranked their real estate markets in a unique way: by competitiveness. Spoiler alert: the top two most competitive cities in this study were San Francisco (#1) and San Jose (#2)!

Three criteria were used to determine the ranking for each city. The first was the number of buyers shopping for loans before finding the property. Next, the average down payment percent. And finally, the percentage of buyers who have prime credit scores (over 680).

Why were these criteria chosen? The more competitive the market, the more competitive buyers offers must be. In a strong seller’s market, having loan contingencies or a lower offer price will hurt your chances at having your offer accepted.

Keep reading below for a snipet of the top 10 most competitive markets from LendingTree’s article, and what it means.

Notice anything similar about LendingTree’s Top 10? We might want to start calling it the Wild West!

What brought San Jose to the #2 position? While it ranked #21 for the percentage of buyers shopping for loans before writing an offer, San Jose was #1 for both the average percentage down and for the percentage of buyers with prime credit scores. San Francisco ranked second in both of those statistics.

LendingTree attributes the competitiveness of Bay Area cities to high-paying high-tech jobs. Whether it’s the industry or something else, the analysis revealed that,

“Some 60% of home shoppers applied for a mortgage before identifying a house. The two cities [San Francisco and San Jose] also came to the table with the highest average down payment of any region, at 19%. Furthermore, nearly two-thirds (64%) of Bay Area shoppers had prime credit scores, above 680.”

We’re in very good company, with all of the top 10 rankings being Western states and nearly all touching the Pacific.

Real estate agents have a number of ways of telling how competitive a market is. Anyone reading the monthly market posts in my other blogs will not be surprised that Silicon Valley is ranked so high.

The market posts on my Valley of Heart’s Delight blog have been showing a hot seller’s market for well over a year with statistics frequently showing properties selling above list price and quickly in markets with little to no inventory. Looking over the long run, many Silicon Valley markets have been showing escalating prices during this time of high demand.

Read the full LendingTree Most Competitive Housing Markets report here, or reach the link through either of the images above:

Check out my market analysis, most areas updated monthly, on my Valley of Heart’s Delight blog: